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Ford's five year plan shows 'significant drop' in jobs, Unite leader says

Len McCluskey, the leader of Unite, the UK's biggest union, has told ITV that a 'significant drop in the number of jobs' is part of Ford's five year plan for Bridgend.

Yesterday ITV News revealed that Ford has drawn up plans to cut 1,160 jobs at its engine plant in Bridgend over the next four years.

Unite leader Len McCluskey speaking to ITV News in Bridgend today. Credit: ITV News

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We've asked Ford to provide for us the plans for Bridgend for the next five years, and they have done that.

Embodied in that is a significant drop in the number of jobs.

But our message is clear ... Ford have a duty to commit to the workforce in Bridgend.

– Unite leader Len McCluskey

Len McCluskey is addressing the Ford workers in separate meetings at the Bridgend plant today.

First Minister calls reports of Ford job losses 'deeply concerning'

Carwyn Jones says he's "deeply concerned" following reports that over a thousand jobs at the Ford engine plant in Bridgend could go over the next four years.

Carwyn Jones is seeking "urgent assurances" from Ford.

The First Minister, who's currently in the United States for a trade and investment tour, also confirmed the Welsh Government were "actively seeking urgent assurances" from Ford about their future plans.

These reports are clearly deeply concerning, and we are actively seeking urgent assurances from Ford - both in the U.K. and US - about their future plans. We are also speaking to the workforce through the trades unions and offering them every assistance. We have worked very closely with Ford over a number of years to secure a future for the Bridgend plant, and we remain committed to supporting these vital manufacturing jobs.

– First Minister Spokesperson

ITV News understands that Ford is responding to a fall in global demand and problems with efficiency - including restrictive work practices - specific to Bridgend.

The company expects headcount to fall from its current level of 1,760 to around 600 by 2021.

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Ford job cuts 'a body blow to Welsh economy'

Archive footage of the Ford factory in Bridgend. Credit: ITV Wales

Adam Price AM has described Ford's decision to draw up plans to cut 1,160 jobs at its engine plant in Bridgend as "a body blow to the heart of the Welsh economy."

The Assembly Member told ITV News that Plaid Cymru will be calling for a "crisis summit" and will table an urgent question in the Assembly.


Continued concerns over future of Bridgend Ford plant

Credit: PA

The general secretary of the union Unite, Len McCluskey, will meet with workers of Ford's car factory in Bridgend today amid concerns over the future of their jobs.

McClusky will also meet with management and will stress the need for assurances of the company's commitment to Wales.

The company has previously said it doesn't plan any job losses and that it still had a "substantial commitment" to the plant.

I have been talking to Ford's European chief executive about the future of the Bridgend plant. Unite will work with Ford and all industrial employers to secure the future of jobs and skills in Wales against the many challenges they face, not least from the government's apparent determination to take Britain out of the single market.

– Len McCluskey, Unite general secretary

Bowie the dog finds a home at last

Bowie, an overlooked pooch at Dogs Trust Bridgend, whose eyes resembled his namesake, David Bowie, has finally found a home.

Bowie was overlooked by hundreds of new owners because of his different coloured eyes, but after an appeal supported by David Bowie’s son, Duncan Jones, he has finally found a home.

Credit: Dogs Trust Bridgend/ PA

The three-year-old Lurcher cross had been residing at the Charity’s rehoming centre in Bridgend since November 2016, until he caught the eye of new owner Nia Bowen who had seen the appeal.

We had recently lost our dogs so we weren’t necessarily looking to get another one straightaway.

But when we saw Bowie’s photo online calling for people to give him a home, we fell in love instantly.

He is a brilliant, bouncy boy, with a real zest for life and we’re so pleased to be able to give him a happy home.

– Nia Bowen, Bowie's new owner
Bowie with new owners Nia and Andrew. Credit: Dogs Trust Bridgend

We are so pleased that Bowie has found the forever home he deserves.

He was quite the celebrity at the centre with staff and we’re so pleased that the appeals to get him a home were seen and heard.

We are very grateful for the media attention and to David Bowie’s son for tweeting about this lovely dog.

He’s a little star and we know he’ll be very happy with his new owners.

– Angela Wetherall, Rehoming Centre Manager at Dogs Trust Bridgend
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